Kashmir: Normal life hit as separatists' march foiled

Police take away supporters of senior separatist leader Mohammad Yasin Malik during a protest march over the death of 7 civilians in a blast at an encounter site in Laroo area of Kulgam district of south Kashmir, at Kokar Bazar in Srinagar on Tuesday. PTI

Normal life remained affected for the second consecutive day on Tuesday in Kashmir as authorities foiled a march by separatists at city centre, here, against the killing of seven civilians in southern Kulgam on Sunday.

 
Seven civilians were killed while a dozen others were injured in a blast at the site of a gunfight in Laroo village of south Kashmir’s Kulgam district on Sunday morning after three Jaish-e-Mohammad militants were killed in an encounter with security forces. The separatists had called for a state-wide shutdown on Monday and a march to city centre Lal Chowk on Tuesday.
 
The police imposed stringent curbs on Lal Chowk and adjoining areas and parts of old city fearing protests and clashes, while separatist leaders were either confined to their homes or taken into “preventive custody.” 
 

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All roads leading to Lal Chowk's historic Ghanta Ghar (clock tower) were sealed with concertina wires while police and paramilitary personnel were deployed to foil any attempt by the separatists to reach there.
 
Police also foiled protest march of the Kashmir Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KCCI) against the Kulgam civilian killings. KCCI Secretary-General, Farooq Amin, in a statement said that Chamber members were prevented from proceeding towards Lal Chowk. “Despite strict restrictions, a large number of members of the Chamber participated in the protest march,” he said.
 
Reports said Army resorted to aerial firing after mob hurled stones at them in Chadoora area of central Kashmir’s Budgam district.
 
Police detained pro-independence JKLF chief Yasin Malik on Tuesday morning after he tried to march towards clock tower in Lal Chowk along with his dozen-odd supporters.  Addressing reporters before his detention, Malik warned of an agitation if the killings were not stopped in Kashmir.
 
Authorities also suspended the high-speed Internet service in Srinagar in view of proposed separatist march and sit-in. An official said that the speed of mobile Internet service has been throttled to 2G in the capital city as a “precautionary measure”.  Schools and colleges have been closed for the day in Srinagar district.

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Kashmir: Normal life hit as separatists' march foiled

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